The King of Fighters '98 UMFE/Athena Asamiya
Athena is primarily a keepaway character with a large bag of tricks to vary up her options. Her main gameplan focuses on using her projectile alongside anti airs, her solid poking buttons and her large amount of movement options to stay unpredictable and frustrate the opponent. Her projectile can also be used to set up offence as they provide frame advantage if blocked. On the offensive she's got access to a command grab to mix the opponent up. Her weaknesses come in the form of weak high low mixups as her jump is slower and floatier than most characters, and a lack of big damage as well.
- st.A : a standard jab with some good reach, useful for stopping hops. Chainable and cancelable.
- st.b : a fast poking move. Whiffs on low crouchers. Not chainable.
- st.C : has good priority and is one of her best pokes. Not Cancelable.
- st.D : has quite a bit of startup but has a lot of low invulnerability. Not cancelable.
- cl.A : good hitbox. Chainable. Cancelable.
- cl.B : same as st.B
- cl.C : one of Athenas fastest normals and a staple combo tool. Cancelable.
- cl.D : has a nice amount of active frames so good to use as a meaty. has some low invulnerability. Cancelable.
- cr.A : has some nice priority. good to use in blockstrings. Chainable. Cancelable.
- cr.B : Athenas only low combo starter. Has good reach. Chainable. Cancelable.
- cr.C : a long poke with nice priority. Useful to poke with and then cancel into psycho ball or teleport. Cancelable on whiff and on contact.
- cr.D : Has a nice upwards hitbox meaning it can anti air. Cancelable.
- j.A : has a great hitbox for air to airs with loads of priority.
- neutral j.A : also great as an anti air as the hitbox and priority are very similar to j.A.
- j.B : has a long hitbox. Can be used for instant overheads and crossups. Not cancelable.
- neutral j.B : It also has a good hitbox for air to airing. Not cancelable.
- j.C : This move has a large hitbox in front of Athena with some good priority making it an excellent air to air. Can also be used as a jump in attack. It does have more startup than her other air to air normals though, so you will need to press it earlier than her other buttons. Cancelable.
- neutral j.C : a jumping elbow strike. Another good air to air normal as it does more damage than her light options but it has less priority than her light options. Cancelable.
- j.D: Your go to jump in button. Not Cancelable.
- neutral j.D : Yet another good choice for air to airs. This normal has more active frames than her other air normals. Not Cancelable.
- st.CD: This moves Athena forward a little. Has a good hitbox that presents a wall in front of Athena. Good to use in pressure when cancelled into special moves. Cancelable on whiff and on contact.
- j.CD : Good to use as a jump in for pressure. Cancelable.
Bit Throw: b/f + C (close)
- Regular throw. Athena flings the opponent across the screen using psycho power making them land almost full screen away. Causes soft knockdown.
Psychic Throw: b/f + D (close)
- Regular throw. Athena flings the opponent behind her across the screen using psycho power making them land full screen away. Causes soft knockdown.
Psychic Shoot: b/d/f + C (close in the air)
- Athena throws the opponent down to the ground making them land 3/4 of a screen away. Not techable. Causes hard knockdown and a backturned wakeup.
Phoenix Bomb: d + B (in air)
- Athena does an aerial butt strike.
- It has a nice hitbox below her that can crossup.
- On hit it sends the opponent flying 3/4 screen way. On block Athena bounces back into the air and can't do anything until she lands making it very punishable. But you can cancel it into phoenix arrow on block to make it safer.
- By performing d + B during a backdash Athena will go further and faster than she would with a regular backdash. the earlier you perform d + B the further she flies.
Renkantai: f + B
- Athena does a split kick that carries her off the ground a bit. Staple tool in combos and blockstrings, especially in the corner.
- Hits high up so it can catch jumps as well. Cancelable.
Psycho Ball: qcb + A/C
- Athena throws a ball shaped projectile. A version travels slower and C version travels faster.
- A version has a little less startup and more recovery and the C version is the opposite.
- the projectile is hoppable.
- This move is the basis for Athenas zoning game as you can throw the A version and start moving about halfway through the projectiles flight. This means you can react to your opponents attempts to deal with the fireball or move forward behind it to apply pressure.
Psycho Sword: dp + A/C (can also be performed in the air)
- Athenas dp. She produces a sword of psycho energy that carries her upwards.
- A version has startup invincibility that ends before the first active frame. C version has invincibility that covers the first 3 active frames of the move.
- A version is your preferred anti air as it's faster while C version is your reversal because of the invincibility.
- The C version pops the opponent up in the air at the 3rd hit, against crouchers the third hit can whiff if there's enough distance between them and Athena, sending her up in the air while the opponent is on the ground ready to punish.
Phoenix Arrow: qcb + B/D (in the air)
- Athena curls up into a ball and ascends diagonally downwards.
- The B version travels shorter while the D version travels longer. The D version ends with a big kick while the B version doesn't.
- D version is very unsafe on block but B version can be safe or unsafe depending on how it hits.
- The D version causes a soft knockdown.
Super Psychic Throw: hcf + A/C (close)
- Athena uses psycho power to throw the opponent into the air.
- The opponent is put into a juggle state as long as they're airborne.
- If you don't hit them in the air they fall, take a little bit of damage and get hard knockdown.
- The move has invincible startup frames so you can use it to go through moves and grab the opponent.
Psycho Reflector: qcb + B/D
- Athena creates a shield of energy in front of her.
- This move will reflect the opponents projectiles and send them flying back at them.
- B version comes out faster and causes a single hit while the D version comes out slower and hits 3 times.
- It will not reflect projectiles that do not leave the opponents body like Ryos or Yuris projectiles but instead it just negates them.
Psychic Teleport: qcf + B/D
- Athena teleports a set distance forward quickly. B version teleports her about 1/2 screen and D version teleports her fullscreen.
- It has no invincibility so she can get hit out of it.
Psycho Ball Revolution: qcf,qcf + A/C
- Athena shoots out a large, slow moving projectile and gets flung back a little.
- A version travels slower while C version travels faster, they both have the same startup and recovery.
- This projectile is not hoppable.
Phoenix Fang Arrow: qcf,qcf + B/D (in the air)
- Athena produces a series of phoenix arrow balls and then descends herself.
- Just like the regular Phoenix Arrow the B version travels shorter while the D version travels faster.
- Will combo from air normals.
Shining Crystal Bit: hcb,hcb + A/C (can also be performed in the air)
- Athena produces a set of energy orbs that rotate around her while she hovers in place.
- A good super that can be used as a reversal as it has some invul or as an anti air.
- It can also be used as a combo tool in the corner.
- It has two followups: qcb + P and ABCD.
> Crystal Shoot: qcb + A/C (can be held)
- qcb + P will make Athena stop the hovering orbs and instead channel them into a projectile she can throw.
- You can delay the throwing by holding the P button you used.
- qcb + A makes the projectile travel in a straight line while qcb + C makes it curve upwards.
> Deactivate: Press A+B+C+D
- ABCD cuts the super short.
- useful if you think you're going to be punished for doing the full thing.
- cr.B cr.A dp+A
- your main low hitconfirm combo
- cr.B/cr.A f+B dp+A
- another low combo option. F+B is safe on block so there isn't much risk to this combo even though you can't hitconfirm it.
- j.X cl.C dp+A/ qcfx2+P
- your main midscreen jump in combo.
- cl.C f+B dp+A
- heavy starter combo, will not work from a jump in.
- (j.X) cl.C f+B qcb+D/qcfx2+K
- your go to combo in the corner.
- cr.B f+B qcb+D/qcfx2+K
- low combo in the corner.
- j.A/j.C qcfx2+K
- super combo from jumping normals.
Strategy & Tips
Unblockable psycho ball setup: By throwing a Psycho ball and using the teleport while the ball is still active you can make it into an unblockable. This becomes especially ueful after her command grab because it causes a hard knockdown. After the psycho throw you can force the opponent into a situation where they will have to deal with an unblockable meaty psycho ball, you do this By throwing a correctly timed psycho ball from about 1/2 away and then teleporting to make it unblockable. If done correctly you can actually combo the unblockable psycho ball into a cl.C -> command grab after the teleport to repeat the same situation again. The opponents only viable escape from this is to time a roll on their first wakeup frame. Use B teleport when they're in the corner and D version everywhere else for this setup.
Phoenix Arrow bug:
By pressing and holding down the A button alongside the B/D button during Phoenix arrow the move will magically do more damage. there is no downside to this so you can freely use it all the time to get more damage from your Phoenix Arrows.